The 700 Billion Bailout Is A Con Job

By: Ken Hughes

Is there anyone who seriously believes GM will go broke without government assistance? Barack Obama began his campaign with a promise of billions for anyone who thought they needed it. Like so many things a lie told often enough becomes a truth. Now every con-man in the country is trying to come up with ways to share in the 700 billion. What authority does congress have to promise a bailout for anyone who applies. Not only does congress not have the authority to lend taxpayer money to incompetent businesses they haven’t figured out how it’ll be repaid if ever. Nor have they explained under what terms these supposed loans will be overseen. There’re too many loose ends that haven’t been worked out to take this proposed bailout seriously.

I live a [nine iron] away from a number of Big Three automotive executives. There are no foreclosure signs in their yards. The limos still come every morning to pick them up for work. The private jets are still sitting at Oakland County International Airport waiting to take these executives to who knows where for who knows what. Has anyone noticed GM didn’t decide they had run out of money until the bailout was announced? To date no one in Detroit is starving to death, I haven’t seen any long lines at soup kitchens. No GM executives have jumped out of the Ren-Cen [GM World Headquarters] buildings windows. Aside from a lot of bitching things in Detroit haven’t changed much. GM is using extortion by fear and it seems to be working. The thing we must recognize all these GM executives are used car salesman at heart making them some of the least credible businessmen on earth.

There’s no question the Big Three are in big trouble financially. A loan from the government isn’t even a band aid for their problems. Due to poor labor agreements and even poorer buyout negations and retirement compensation packages the Detroit Auto Industries has painted themselves in a corner they can’t get out of. UAW workers earn twice what workers in foreign car companies earn assembling a similar product in southern states. UAW workers drive Toyota’s and other foreign brand names. Auto executives are paid millions plus bonuses for managing a failing industry. Too much of the engineering of cars goes into bells and whistles and not enough into product technology. The next big bite into the cost of manufacturing is EPA mandates. EPA mandates requiring unnecessary fuel consumption regulations and emission controls adding additional costs that can’t be justifies except by special interests who aren’t engineers. The government demands too much to fast. Given time technology will
take care of everything the government demands and be able to do it at a profit not an added expense.

If the automotive industry is on its last legs in Michigan whose to blame? It certainly isn’t the American taxpayers, Detroit has had more than one opportunity to expand its base beyond automobiles and automobile related products. Political arrogance and pride of being number one at something prevented Detroit from expanding into the 21st century. The automobile has always been phallic symbols for both men and women, ergo the more adornments the more macho cars become, at a cost they can’t justify.

There are thousands of businesses in this country to small and too insignificant for congress to bother regulating. These businesses are the backbone of our economy, congress can’t be bothered and fortunately they keep their grubby hands off. Industries get in trouble when government steps in and micro manages them. When industries fail management is blamed. When a nation fails every one but those responsible [congress] get blamed. Along with firing a bunch of executives of these failed companies I say hang a few congress persons along with them. Hasn’t it been congresses position the boards of directors of the failed companies share the blame equally?

For those who think hanging congress persons is over the top maybe 40 lashes will do to bring them back to reality.

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